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Beijing deepens assault on crypto

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China's central bank has warned companies against assisting cryptocurrency-related businesses. AFP

Beijing deepens assault on crypto

China's central bank warned companies on July 6 against assisting cryptocurrency-related businesses as it shut down a software firm over suspected involvement in digital currency transactions.

Beijing has turned a sharp eye on cryptocurrency in recent months as it widens its regulatory crackdown on the tech sector.

Cryptocurrency trading is banned in China, and authorities have recently closed mines and warned banks to halt related transactions.

On July 6, a Beijing office of the central bank ordered the closure of software company Beijing Qudao Cultural Development, alleging it had been involved in providing software services for cryptocurrency transactions.

The move was necessary “to prevent and control the risk of speculation in virtual currency transactions, and protect the safety of the public’s assets”, it said in a statement.

The bank also warned organisations not to “provide premises, commercial display, advertising … and other services for cryptocurrency-related business activities”.

Financial and payment institutions are instructed not to provide cryptocurrency-related services to customers.

The announcement comes shortly after provinces including Sichuan, Inner Mongolia and Qinghai shut down crypto mines – causing miners to look abroad – and follows an earlier warning for banks and a payment giant to halt crypto-related transactions.

Last month, bitcoin tumbled after China’s mining ban in southwestern Sichuan.

According to a June 20 report in state tabloid, the Global Times, the closure of mines in the province has resulted in the shuttering of more than 90 per cent of the country’s Bitcoin mining capacity.

Chinese mines power nearly 80 per cent of the global trade in cryptocurrencies despite a domestic trading ban since 2017.

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